My Last Blog For A While…So Lots to Cover!


Behind me and my trusty man purse is the Jersey shore. What a fun trip and beautiful day that was! I am 40 and I have never been to New York. I’ve heard so many stories, friends of mine who have gone, but being there was absolutely amazing.

I saw 2 movies this past week that had to do with New York City…how rare is that to find a movie about New York? Yes, just about every movie ever made takes place there. As I walked the streets it seems every corner was the set of some movie I saw. But the two movies I saw this week, “Adventureland” and “Julie and Julia,” had New York figure some way into the plot line.

First off, today’s WHAT THE HECK! Why do all these movie critics like “Adventureland?” (I saw it on DVD, by the way, where most people will see it.) The movie is the most boring draggy no point piece of film I have seen since “Married Life” (oh, do NOT see this movie, it will depress you and give you a headache). I’m tired of movies making pot some kind of cool thing. This isn’t 1979 anymore! Seth Rogan at least stopped toking by the time he did “Funny People” (or not as much). “Adventureland” was supposed to show the 80’s the way they really were. The soundtrack was supposed to be the quintessential 80’s soundtrack. I heard a Cure song and one from girl band Expose. The rest sounded like it came from the 70’s (Lou Reed’s “Satellite of Love” wasn’t being played by ANY radio station by the time the period of the movie takes place). For a MUCH better movie (that makes better use of REAL 80’s songs even though it takes place in the modern day) see “(500) Days Of Summer.” That movie drags a little but at least its approach is fresh.

I’ll admit “Julie and Julia” drags a bit, too, but, it takes on the monumental task of tying together 3 amazing personalities: Julia Childs, Julie who tries to make all Julia’s recipes, and FOOD ITSELF. Food is a character in the movie; it is an object of love. Stanley Tucci is fantastic as Julia’s husband. Meryl Streep does a fantastic job portraying Julia without being a caricature. Nora Ephron directed and wrote the screenplay. She put her love of New York in it as well as the heartbreak of wanting to be a New Yorker but having to live outside of it due to economic reasons. There is other heartbreak in this movie with Julia and Paul Childs not being able to have children. This only takes part in a small sequence in the film, but there is so much in this movie that takes place in only an instant that is meant to convey so much more. The movie is over 2 hours because there is so much to cover.

Which makes me think, why do movies out today have to be about silly passe topics like pot or cgi created creatures that no one cares about? New ground needs to be covered by the film, tv, and story writers of today, not relying on outdated themes. Maybe a lot of pot is consumed in the making of these movies so they need to put it in the movie since it’s an object of love.

In any case, I was so glad to spend some time in the city that has been the set for many a film. Oh, and don’t listen to people that tell you New Yorker’s are less than friendly. Outside of the tourist areas, I met some extremely nice natives who were more than happy to talk about the city and talk to me about my current home, Alabama. It turns out that Southerners aren’t necessarily as hospitable above the Mason Dixon line. One food server told me that while New Yorkers tend to be laid back, patrons that hail from the Bible Belt tend to be quite rude and impatient.

That’s another WHAT THE HECK? I looked at my Facebook under one of the photo’s I uploaded from my NYC trip and someone who is very Southern wrote she wouldn’t visit New York even if you dropped her in the middle using a helicopter! I wrote back she should take the subway because it’s much more fun.

I think a lot of people in my current surroundings have no clue what New York, L.A., or San Francisco are like. You can blame it to the high cost of travel, but for others I think it’s they just don’t want to leave. They don’t want to explore. Of course, I find this ridiculous since I came here from there and was very willing to explore. I’ve lived in the South for 2 years now, and in 11 days I will be heading back to California.

I will miss a lot about the South. There is definitely an amazing hospitality among some of the people here. The countryside is so beautiful. The BBQ is so delicious! The birds are amazing, too. I have heard so many bird songs I have not heard any where else. I won’t miss the mowing and the holier than thou attitude of a lot of people here. I won’t miss the rampant unchecked urban sprawl, the lack of proper community planning. I won’t miss the lack of adequate restaurants (fast food abounds). But that’s just about it. I liked it here while I was here (except for the job I had and the good ole boys club attitude I had to deal with which I wrote about in previous installments). Luckily, I’ll still have my house here which I will rent out.

One more great thing about living here in Huntsville: the best public library anywhere! I never checked out a book, but the CD’s! What a fantastic selection!

That’s it for now. I’ll write again after I get settled in CA which may take a while. Please leave comments and check out all my links on this page to keep track of Mike’s One Minute What the Heck and Michael Matthews. Let me know what your WHAT THE HECK is so we can discuss it. Talk to you soon!

Sorry if this blog “dragged.”

Mike